Yesterday, my boyfriend and I got a phone call for a small (kind of) house game. Currently unemployed and in debt, I should have thought twice about agreeing to go. But a true poker player at heart leaves all that junk behind and goes to play, even if it is only a 5 cent-10 cent table. We go. We flock to these new age torture chambers with hope and big dreams. While my earlier gaming addiction was limited to KoinQQ, it had now evolved to include a wide array of other games as well.
Thinking about it, we seem to be no different than my grandparents who came here for a better life. Instead of crossing bodies of water or land masses, we trudge to the nearest casino with hundreds of dollars in our pocket, our fragile skill set, and hope. Hope is the thing that keeps poker players going. No matter how bad the economy is getting, on a Friday night the poker room at the Trop always has a waiting list. The itch to play can only constitute for so much of an excuse. We are dreamers. Poker players all look to have that once in while lucky streak that Jamie Gold rode into a WSOP bracelet and over twelve million dollars. We hear stories of people making $100 into $1000 in a few hours. Most of us have done it at least once. Poker shows us the doors and the hands we play are the keys to open them. But what happens when we play poorly or get a bad beat? Do we falter? Maybe. Maybe for one month we pull back the reins and try to bury that part of us.
But, we miss the exhilaration of an all in, the satisfaction of bluffing out someone, and the genuine happiness of getting called when you have the nuts. We forget about the junky calls and the misdeals and the mistakes. We forget and give poker another chance. It has the same characteristics of a twist love affair, but if you play your cards right you can profit. No matter how much a poker player gets cracked with Aces, we will always love them. No matter how terrible the economy is becoming, we will still find time for our little house games.
The poker table is a microcosm for the world, a stage, if you will. Yet, perhaps the biggest draw to poker is the fact that an unemployed 21-year-old woman can sit at a table with a Product Manager, a Goldman-Sachs executive, and a Pizza man and we are all equal. Job titles, socio-ecomonic statuses, class do not come into effect at the poker table. It all gets washed away. The only aspect that divides us is our poker ability. Off the table, we are who we are, no doubt about that. Yet when we sit, be it 5-handed or at a full table, we can be whoever we want to be. The rest just fades away and the focus becomes that very moment.